The 10 Best Deodorants for Women of 2020

Stay smell-free while you sweat

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Our Top Picks
"Made with an unscented and non-staining formula, the unisex, award-winning deodorant is expected to work for 24 hours."
"Dermatologist-approved and infused with antioxidants, it provides odor protection without being too overpowering."
"If you prefer a fragranced formula, this lavender and eucalyptus-scented pick promises to provide two days of sweat protection."
"If you're in need of something stronger to handle high intensity workouts, this option works to combat wetness the more you move."
"A smooth, aluminum-free application is followed by stain-free clothing and effective protection from odors."
"This instantly-absorbing formula saves time and ensures that you won't have to wait for it to dry before putting on your outfit."
"An alternative to sticks, this spray choice offers lasting freshness, so you can worry about one less thing throughout your day."
"A quick swipe provides 24 hours of protection, and its formula is designed to reduce odors with little fregrance."
"Aluminum-, paraben-, and cruelty-free, this deodorant is a choice you and your skin can feel good about."
"Tailored to those with sensitive skin, it contains few ingredients while being free of dyes, fragrance, and preservatives."

Like many women out there, we love an intense workout. However, we could do without the stinky sweat it leaves behind. Luckily, there are lots of deodorant formulas on the market today that can help minimize excess sweat, thwart odor-causing bacteria, and keep you feeling fresh and clean long after you’ve hit your daily movement goal.

"First, know the difference between deodorants and antiperspirants: Deodorants reduce odor and antiperspirants reduce sweat," Dr. Brendan Camp, MD, a board-certified dermatologist and dermatopathologist, says. Choosing between the two is up to personal preference, as well as the amount that you sweat and your comfort level.

Here are the best deodorants for women on the market. 

Best Overall: Ursa Major Base Layer Deodorant

Get back to basics with this natural pick from Ursa Major. Powered by odor-fighting hops and saccharomyces ferment, absorbent kaolin clay, moisturizing shea butter, and soothing aloe, this deodorant formula does an excellent job of absorbing sweat and odor and soothing the skin simultaneously.

It’s also unscented, making it a great option for folks with fragrance sensitivities. The formula provides 24 hours of sweat and odor protection, is void of aluminum and baking soda, and won’t stain your favorite workout top. Wins all around.

Best Natural: LAVANILA Sport Luxe Deodorant

There are a lot of natural options on this list, but we especially love this high-performance formula from LAVANILA. The invisible solid uses the brand’s SmartSport technology to break down sweat as it forms, delivering quick and effective odor protection as you move through your favorite workout routine.

It’s free of aluminum, parabens, propylene glycol, and other harsh chemicals commonly found in traditional deodorants. Sheer and natural, the formula gives your skin just the right amount of room to breathe, along with a subtle boost of fresh scent. 

Best Long-Lasting: Secret Antiperspirant Deodorant with Pure Essential Oils

Secret sells so many beloved deodorant formulas for women, but this newer essential oils-based stick is our favorite for several reasons. The aluminum-powered antiperspirant blocks excess sweat for up to 48 hours while the classic combination of lavender and eucalyptus essential oils keeps you feeling both fresh and stress-free long after your workout (and workday) is complete.

Free of both parabens and dyes, it’s less likely to irritate the skin and goes on smoothly with each application. It’s also a bargain compared to some of the other picks on this list. 

What Experts Say

“Personal preference plays a role in deciding what ingredients to avoid. There is some concern that aluminum contained within antiperspirant products may accumulate in breast tissue and play a role in the development of breast cancer. However, according to the National Cancer Institute, no scientific link exists between the use of these products and breast cancer.—Dr. Brendan Camp, MD, a board-certified dermatologist and dermatopathologist

Best Extra Strength: Degree Clinical Protection Deodorant

Stinky sweat doesn’t stand a chance against this clinical protection formula from Degree. An antiperspirant and a deodorant, it does an excellent job of keeping you dry and fresh with a light yet long-lasting scent. The more you move, the harder it works—it’s three times stronger than your standard antiperspirant.

Meanwhile, it remains gentle on the skin thanks to a unique combination of moisturizing ingredients. In order to best build a strong layer of protection for the day ahead, apply to your underarms before bed.

Best Scent: Native Coconut & Vanilla Deodorant

Native is a cult favorite in the natural cosmetics community for several reasons, one of which being its impressive catalog of amazing scent combinations. While coconut and vanilla is easily the brand’s best-selling deodorant stick, cucumber and mint is another top pick, as is lavender and rose. The brand even releases seasonal scents (think pumpkin spice latte).

Oh, and the stuff really works. Free of aluminum, parabens, sulfates, phthalates, and talc, the solid formula is powered by ingredients like coconut oil, tapioca starch, shea butter, and probiotics to keep you feeling fresh and smooth all day long.

Best Antiperspirant: Dove Dry Serum Antiperspirant Deodorant

Dove is known for making deodorants and antiperspirants that are tough on odors, yet gentle on skin. This serum takes your skincare to the next level while also providing top sweat-blocking power. The dry serum formula is sheer and lightweight, resulting in a luxurious texture. It absorbs instantly, leaving your skin dry to the touch and residue-free.

As the moisturizers keep your skin soft and subtle, the aluminum-based antiperspirant works to keep you dry for up to 48 hours. The scent is also fresh and subtle—ideal for folks who are sensitive to strong perfumes or don’t want it to clash with their signature fragrance. 

Best Spray: Way of Will 01 Natural Deodorant Spray

Not a fan of the solid stick? Give this natural spray formula from Way of Will a try. Made with pure grade essential oils, this spray feels clean and cooling as you spritz it under your arms, and the spicy fragrance awakens your senses as you get ready for your workout. It’s free of aluminum compounds, parabens, synthetic fragrances and oils, artificial colors, and alcohol.

Instead, it uses potassium alum—a naturally occurring mineral salt that is safe to use on skin—to reduce odor effectively. What’s more, it won’t leave any of those annoying deodorant streaks or stains on your clothes.

Best Gel: Ban Powder Fresh Roll-On Deodorant

This clear roll-on gel deodorant-antiperspirant duo is a crowd-pleaser for several reasons. First, it never leaves streaks behind on your favorite workout clothes. Second, despite its use of aluminum to block excess sweat, many people with sensitive skin report better results with it than your average stick, likely due to the lack of heavy fragrances.

The wetness protection lasts all day, and the powder scent is just fragrant enough to leave you feeling clean and fresh. Lastly, it’s a high-quality budget buy, so restocking your supply will never break the bank. 

Best Aluminum-Free: Type: A Deodorant - The Visionary

Not into aluminum but still need powerful sweat and odor protection for your workouts? Check out Type: A, a lightweight cream deodorant formula that comes in an ergonomic, travel-friendly tube and absorbs into the skin quickly to keep you feeling fresh.

Its patented sweat-activated technology releases odor-preventing ingredients as you move to eliminate stinky sweat on the spot. Plus, the crisp, clean citron scent, which is made with essential oils exclusively, feels both clean and energizing.

Type: A contains less baking soda than most natural deodorant brands, and it’s both non-toxic and cruelty-free. 

Best for Sensitive Skin: Vanicream Antiperspirant Deodorant

This expert-recommended pick is an excellent choice for folks who tend to experience rashes and breakouts with traditional deodorant formulas. It avoids a handful of commonly irritating ingredients: dyes, fragrance, masking fragrance, lanolin, parabens, formaldehyde, formaldehyde releasers, and other preservatives. It’s also free of baking soda, botanicals and essential oils, talc, ethanol, and gluten.

Meanwhile, the dermatologist-tested antiperspirant is powered by aluminum to give you 24 hours of clinical-grade wetness protection. Women who have fragrance sensitivities swear by this invisible solid, which glides on smoothly with every application.

Final Verdict

At the end of the day, picking your perfect deodorant is a very personal choice. It depends significantly on your body chemistry, how naturally sweaty and aromatic you tend to be as your body cools and detoxifies, and how intense your typical workout tends to be. With that said, we confidently recommend Ursa Major Base Layer Deodorant to any woman because of its natural and sensitive skin-safe formulation, not to mention its overall effectiveness. Meanwhile, if you’re really not concerned about the “natural” label and want a product that will kick both excess sweat and odor to the curb, go with Dove Dry Serum Antiperspirant Deodorant. It’s potent enough to get the job done while being surprisingly gentle with its smart blend of skin moisturizers. 

What to Look for in a Deodorant

Application Method

Most women have grown accustomed to the traditional deodorant stick, but these products also come in sprays, roll-ons, and even putties in jars that require manual application. If you’re looking for a sweat-busting solution for when you’re on the go, consider convenience first and foremost. If you can’t apply it without needing to wash your hands afterward, it’s probably not the best quick fix, especially for workouts.

Active Ingredients

Classic deodorants use a variety of ingredients—such as alcohols, salts, and antimicrobials like triclosan—to help tackle odor associated with sweat. Meanwhile, many antiperspirants use aluminum in one of many chemical compounds to reduce overall sweat production. More natural formulations rely on things like essential oils, clays, charcoal, and natural starches to absorb sweat and mask its odor. Each of these ingredients is currently deemed safe by the Food and Drug Administration, but many people find the natural options to be less irritating to the skin.

Fragrance

Lots of people are sensitive to fragrance, experiencing rashes, breakouts, and more when applying synthetic scents and compounds directly to the skin. Meanwhile, there are plenty of deodorants that are scented naturally with botanicals and essential oils that are milder and less irritating. Some aren’t scented at all. Again, regulatory agencies support the manufacturing and use of many synthetic fragrances, but if you’re worried about them, save yourself some time and go the natural and/or unscented route.

Antiperspirant

Remember that deodorants and antiperspirants are two distinct products. If you’re focused on odor control, you will have many more natural solutions to choose from. But if you’re set on an antiperspirant product, it’s more difficult to find one that doesn’t rely on a chemical combination for effectiveness. Most natural products will avoid blocking your body’s innate sweat response and simply make it less unpleasant as you move through your workouts. 

Why Trust Verywell Fit

As a seasoned health writer, Alena Hall understands how important it is to know exactly what you’re getting in a wellness product. Over the years, she has reviewed dozens of products, from athletic recovery aids to homeopathic essential oils to ever-trendy CBD topicals, to help readers like you discover products that can help you live your best life. 

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Article Sources
Verywell Fit uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
  1. Antiperspirants/Deodorants and Breast Cancer - National Cancer Institute. Published August 18, 2005.

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